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    Even Amid Economic Uncertainty, Tooth Fairy’s Giving Hits New Heights

    Northeast Has Highest Monetary Average Gift For Lost Tooth 

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    Boston, MA (March 9, 2021) - Even during a time of great economic uncertainty, one item near and dear to many children across the Commonwealth has increased in value over the past year – the value of a tooth. Delta Dental released new findings from its Original Tooth Fairy Poll® that show the Tooth Fairy's average cash gift reached its highest point in the 23-year history of the poll: $4.70 per tooth. The Northeast had the highest average monetary gift for a lost tooth at $5.72.  Delta Dental has been analyzing the Tooth Fairy's U.S. annual giving trends since 1998. The newly disclosed value of a lost tooth has more than tripled since its inception, when the value of a lost tooth was $1.30. In 2020, historical giving is marked as the highest all-time average gift of $4.70 per tooth, four cents higher than the previous peak in 2017 at $4.66.  

    Tooth Fairy Index line graph

    The value of lost tooth and the economy  The Original Tooth Fairy Poll has typically mirrored the economy's overall direction, tracking with the trends of Standard & Poor's 500 Index (S&P 500) for 16 of the past 19 years. Last year, a single lost tooth was valued at $4.03, and this year's survey shows upward growth to $4.70, a 17% increase. Over the same time, the S&P 500 also experienced growth, with a 19% increase, reaching its highest average since the inception of the Original Tooth Fairy survey.  

    U.S. regional snapshot 
    • $5.72 – The Northeast: Leads U.S. regions in the highest average monetary gift for a lost tooth. 
    • $5.54 – The West: With a nearly $2 increase from 2019, the West moves from third to second in the regional rankings this year.  
    • $4.45 – The South: Tracks most closely to the overall U.S. average. 
    • $3.66 – The Midwest: Remains lower than the national average for the third year in a row.  
    About the survey 
    The Original Tooth Fairy Poll was conducted between Dec. 28, 2020, and Jan. 8, 2021, among a nationally representative sample of 1,000+ parents of children ages 6-12. The margin of error is +/- 3%.   For more information about the Delta Dental-sponsored survey and oral health tips for infants to pre-teen, visit Original Tooth Fairy Poll.  

    About Delta Dental of Massachusetts
    Delta Dental of Massachusetts (, the largest provider of dental benefits in the state, is a leader in innovative programs that improve the overall health of members, prevent oral disease and reduce health care costs for employers, groups and individuals. Headquartered in Charlestown, Mass., Delta Dental of Massachusetts, a member of the Delta Dental Plans Association (, covers more than 2 million people. Follow us on Twitter (@DeltaDentalofMA), Facebook (, and Instagram (@deltadentalofma) and check out the monthly oral health calendar at

    About Delta Dental Plans Association 
    Delta Dental Plans Association, based in Oak Brook, Illinois, is the not-for-profit national association of the 39 independent Delta Dental companies. Through these companies, Delta Dental is the nation's largest dental insurance provider, covering more than 80 million Americans and offering the country's largest dental network with approximately 156,000 participating dentists. In 2019, Delta Dental companies provided $76 million in direct and in-kind community outreach support to improve the oral health of adults, children, and infants in local communities across the country. Visit for additional information on dental plans and more. Follow Delta Dental on Twitter @DeltaDental and Facebook: Delta Dental Plans Association.